Scientists advised to include nuts in everyday diet: they are good for the heart and improve the quality of sperm

The results of two studies show that the inclusion of walnuts, hazelnuts, and almonds in the diet can significantly improve human health. The first one, published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, demonstrates that elderly people aged 60 to 70 years, who regularly consume walnuts, reduce inflammation in the body, which significantly reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease. The second one, published in the Andrology magazine, shows that the introduction of a mixture of nuts in men's diet improves the quality of sperm: genes responsible for successful egg fertilization are activated.

The first study was conducted by doctors from the Clinical Hospital of Barcelona, Spain, in collaboration with scientists from the University of Loma Linda (USA), and more than 600 healthy elderly people participated in it. The experimental group consumed 30-60 grams of walnuts per day, the control group kept to a standard diet without nuts. Watching the participants lasted two years.

As a result, scientists recorded a significant decrease in the concentration of inflammatory markers in the first group, including interleukin-1β, which is a powerful pro-inflammatory cytokine. Inactivation of interleukin-1β is closely related to the reduction of the risk of cardiovascular diseases, such as coronary heart disease. General inflammation in the body decreased to 11.5%, which was associated with a decrease in the probability of atherosclerosis, as well as cardiovascular disasters: heart attack and stroke.

According to scientists, walnuts are very useful for the heart due to the optimal content of necessary nutrients, such as omega-3-polynene-saturated fatty acid (alpha-linolenic acid), polyphenols, and other bioactive components that have an anti-inflammatory effect.

The second study was conducted by specialists from the University of Rovira y Virgil (Spain) and the University of Utah (USA). They were interested in how the introduction of walnuts, hazelnuts, and almonds into the diet changes the activity of sperm genes. The participants were 72 non-smoking men eating the "western type": their diet was rich in fat, sweet and salty, and few fruits, vegetables, and nuts. They were divided into two groups: the first group needed to add a handful of nuts (60 grams) to their usual diet, and the second group needed to continue eating as usual. 

As a result, the genetic analysis of sperm of the participants showed that thanks to a diet that includes nuts, men changed the methylation profile in 36 genome sites. Such changes were related to the improvement of sperm fertilization ability.

Nov. 13, 2020, 10:53 a.m.

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